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Day 4: Damaging testimony in the Leggio Trial
JEFFERSON COUNTY - by Leslie Rangel
A witness provided damaging testimony Thursday against a truck driver who is the subject of a civil trial, stemming from a massive collision.
The children of Debra and Vincent Leggio are suing the truck driver and a trucking company following last year's Thanksgiving Day collision in Jefferson County.
The children are suing for damages but the lawsuit doesn't spell out how much money they're seeking.
More than one hundred vehicles collided in heavy fog on Interstate-10 near Hamshire Road.
Dozens of people were hurt. The Leggios died when a truck slammed into their car.
During testimony this morning, one accident investigator said the truck driver was not following his company's policy of remaining nine seconds behind any car in front of him.
According to the witness, the driver would have been able to stop if' he'd followed that policy.
The driver and company say the fog caused the accident. They maintain they're not responsible.
KFDM'S Leslie Rangel is covering the trial. Below is her report.
Day four of the civil trial presented testimony from only one witness.
The crash investigator said the government had given unsafe scores to the trucking company, C.R. England, for several months prior to last year's crash.
And the plaintiff's attorneys says information he got from the company shows that about six hours before the early morning crash, the driver Richardo Kerr sent out a text message through the company's messaging system while he was behind the wheel.
Plaintiffs say it proves if Kerr could send a text, he certainly could have checked text warnings he received from the company about an hour before the collision, reporting dangerous fog.
The witness showed jurors that C.R. England transportation company has a policy that requires drivers to remain at least nine seconds behind any car in front of them, even in good weather conditions.
The witness told the jury that If Kerr had been driving according to his company's guidelines, he would have had time to stop, not once but twice before crashing into the Leggio's SUV.
During the trial, the defense has never wavered from its belief the fog created a hazard for all drivers, including the truck driver. The defense says the fog is the only reason for the crash.
Testimony continues Friday afternoon.